Remembering Henry "Duffy" Rathbun

Remembering Henry "Duffy" Rathbun

News
We are saddened to report that Henry "Duffy" Rathbun, one of the founding partners of Wilmer, Cutler & Pickering, passed away last week at age 87 after suffering a heart attack at a family outing in Florida. Duffy joined Lloyd Cutler and John Pickering in forming their new firm in May 1962. During his 25 years at the Firm, Duffy helped establish and lead a premiere banking law practice that continues to this day. Duffy will be remembered not only for his many accomplishments in legal practice, including his mentoring of many young lawyers, but also for his warm, welcoming and gracious manner and his great sense of humor.

As his nickname suggests, Duffy was an avid golfer and regularly invited associates and partners to play with him. Duffy and his wife of 56 years, Sheilah Moore Rathbun, had a thoroughbred horse breeding and racing farm in Middleburg, Virginia, and both were active in open space preservation efforts in Virginia. Duffy once persuaded Lloyd Cutler to buy a racehorse with him; the horse lost every race he ran, providing much amusement to Duffy's and Lloyd's colleagues. He had another horse that he bought in a foreclosure sale, and aptly named "Courthouse Steps." Duffy's wife Sheilah died in 2005. Duffy is survived by three children, Gordon Rathbun, Jennie Rathbun and Sheila Rathbun Benfey.